Minnesota
12

BEAR HEAD LAKE STATE PARK

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Bear Head Lake State Park © stateparks.com
Rental watercraft on Bear Head Lake, Bear Head Lake State Park, Minnesota, USA
Bear Head Lake State Park © stateparks.com
Autumn dawn on Bear Head Lake, Bear Head Lake State Park, Minnesota, USA
Bear Head Lake State Park © stateparks.com
Bear Head Lake State Park © stateparks.com
Steam fog on Bear Head Lake during a chilly autumn sunset at Bear Head Lake State Park near Ely, Minnesota.
Bear Head Lake State Park Bear Head Lake Sunrise © Lucas Payne
Common Loon © stateparks.com
Campfire and Hotdogs © stateparks.com
Roasting hot dogs over an open fire.
Cool Swim © stateparks.com
Picnic Table © stateparks.com
It is always a great day for a picnic in the park.
Oh Yell © stateparks.com
BEAR HEAD LAKE STATE PARK ACTIVITIES
Birding
The park offers birding opportunities with over 100 species, including warblers and loons. Bird checklists are available.
Trails
1. Bear Head Lake State Park Trail: A 4 mile loop that circles the namesake lake, offering scenic views and a chance to spot wildlife like eagles and moose.

2. Norberg Lake Loop: Approximately 3 miles long, this trail takes hikers around Norberg Lake with opportunities for fishing along the way.

3. Blueberry Hill Trail: This is a short hike of about half a mile leading up to an overlook providing panoramic vistas of the surrounding forested landscape.

4. Taconite State Trail Access Point: The park provides access to this extensive multi-use state trail which spans over 165 miles through northeastern Minnesota's forests; lengths within the park vary depending on entry point.

5. Beck’s Road Hiking Club Route (HCR): At roughly two-and-a-half-miles round trip, it offers moderate terrain suitable for most skill levels while showcasing various habitats including wetlands and boreal forests.

6. Cub Creek Loop: Considered an easy trek ideal for families or those looking for shorter walks in nature. It meanders alongside its eponymous creek where beavers are often active builders visible from trailsides.

7. Sunrise Campsite Spur: Less than one mile out-and-back spur connecting main campgrounds with remote sunrise campsites. Offers tranquil morning hikes perfect for catching early light glinting off lakeshores.

8. Ancient Pines Loop: Roughly three-quarters-of-a-mile circuit passing old-growth pine stands. Provides educational signage detailing local ecology history.

9. Fenske Lake Pathway: Short connector less than quarter-mile linking campground areas directly adjacent Fenske Lakeside spots.

10. Fishing Pier Walkway: Easy-access boardwalk path under half-mile reaching into Bear Head waters.
Bicycling
In this northern Minnesota location, biking options are abundant. However, caution is advised due to the park's rugged terrain.

The Taconite State Trail offers a 165-mile route for bikers but requires careful navigation because of its uneven surfaces.

For those seeking less challenging rides, there are several paved trails suitable for all skill levels within the vicinity.

Mountain bike enthusiasts can explore numerous off-road paths that wind through dense forests and around lakes - remember safety gear!

Please note: some routes may be shared with hikers or horseback riders; always respect other trail users' rights-of-way.

During winter months, fat tire biking becomes popular on snow-packed trails – ensure you're adequately prepared for cold conditions!
Boating
The park offers a variety of boating options for visitors. There are boat rentals available including canoes, kayaks and paddleboards which allow you to explore the lake at your own pace. For those who prefer motorized boats, there is also a public access ramp provided by the Department of Natural Resources where personal watercrafts can be launched into Bear Head Lake. Fishing enthusiasts will find plenty of opportunities with walleye, northern pike and bass among others in abundance within these waters.
Swimming
1. Bear Head Lake State Park offers a designated swimming area on the lake's sandy beach.
2. There are no lifeguards, so swimmers swim at their own risk.
3. The park provides changing facilities and restrooms near the beach for convenience.
4. Swimming is also allowed in other parts of the lake outside of marked areas with caution advised due to boat traffic or natural hazards like rocks and logs under water surface.
5. For safety reasons, diving from cliffs around the lakeshore is not permitted within this state park.

Fishing
Enjoy fishing in a serene environment with options like shore, boat and ice fishing. Species include Northern Pike, Smallmouth Bass, Walleye and Bluegill. You can also find Crappie and Yellow Perch here. Boat rentals are available for those without their own equipment.
Minnesota
12

BEAR HEAD LAKE STATE PARK

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